Despite its apparent homogeneity, language can be subdivided into typologies, based on its characteristics. Considering the degree of artificiality and conventionality involved in the construction of symbols or signs of language, it can only be natural or artificial. The natural language, also called ordinary language, is the one used by a linguistic community with the primary purpose of communication and has been built with linguistic and social rules and conventions during the period of historical constitution of this society. It is the language we all speak. The individual, due to the fact of being born in society, normatively accepts the language of his own linguistic community; the influence that the individual can exert on language, happens only through the fact of speaking it, through speech.
Examples of natural language are Spanish, Catalan, Basque or Galician, in Spain, and any other language spoken in some part of the world. Natural language is considered an instrument highly adapted to the communication of ordinary life, but ambiguous and vague if we are to attend to the point of view of scientific communication.
Artificial language, as opposed to natural language, aims to avoid –precisely- the drawbacks of ambiguity and vagueness of natural or ordinary languages and, therefore, presents a degree of artificiality andmuch greater conventionality as regards the construction of symbols and the meaning assigned to them. Symbols and meanings do not belong to any natural community of speakers, but to groups of speakers related for scientific or technical purposes. The artificially constructed language is divided into technical and formal.
The technical language uses natural language, but previously defined in a large part of its terms, so that the words technically acquire their own meaning and adequate for the purposes of the community that uses them. Thus, the technical language of physics, for example, defines the sense in which it uses terms, also typical of ordinary language, such as force, mass, speed, space, etc., and the technical language of medicine, obscure to laymen, it is extremely useful for medical practice.
The formal language, in turn, is a class of artificial language in which not only the symbols of the language are constructed artificially and conventionally, but also its rules of construction and its transformation rules, becoming in practice a calculation. Formal languages, if they also adopt an interpretation, become fully formalized languages.